Scheme calls time on drunks

Morpeth DPPO boundaries
Morpeth DPPO boundaries

Police have praised a valuable tool in helping them to tackle drunken behaviour.

A Designated Public Place Order (DPPO) was put in place around Morpeth six years ago to help officers crack down on alcohol-related crime and disorder.

It gives police powers to demand that a person stops drinking alcohol in a public place within the order zone and makes it an offence to refuse to dispose of alcohol when requested by an officer.

If the culprit ignores officers’ requests, they can be arrested.

Morpeth Neighbourhood Inspector Grant Dawson says the order has been useful.

He said: “Morpeth has a well-deserved reputation as a popular and welcoming tourist town and this order helps us to tackle the small minority who get involved in drunkenness, disorder and nuisance behaviour.

“The DPPO has been a useful tool in the last few years and it has really helped us reduce the problems caused by alcohol.

“Although crime and reports of anti-social behaviour are low in the area, the DPPO gives us another option to address local concerns and reports of any disorder linked to drinking in a public place.”

He added: “Feedback from local residents shows these DPPOs are popular and the community wants us to take positive action against the few individuals whose behaviour can affect other people’s quality of life.”